By Matt Stefano
The Soo Thunderbirds are getting set for postseason action after completing their 2019-2020 regular season.
This season, the Thunderbirds finished off with a record of 30 wins, 19 losses, 3 overtime losses and 4 shootout losses, good for 67 points and third place in the NOJHL’s West Division.
This year’s club had a lot of rookie talent and saw a pair of rookies tie team records.
A LEADER AT 16
Jake Kovacs was the youngest player on the Thunderbirds roster this season, but that didn’t stop him from being the top scorer on his team.
The Thunderbirds rookie forward finished first in team scoring this season with 27 goals and 58 points in 55 games.
Kovacs, who turned 16 years old back on September 25th, became the first Thunderbird rookie to finish first in team scoring at the end of a regular season since Brett Perlini did back in 2006-2007.
Soo Greyhounds 2019 eleventh round pick Tyler Savard was an overtime hero for the Thunderbirds during the regular season.
The 16 year old led all NOJHL rookies in overtime goals during the regular season with 2.
Savard also tied the Thunderbirds record for most overtime goals by a player in a regular season, joining Jeff Rainville (2003), Jerry Petingalo (2011), Geoff Gieni (2011) and Eric Hillock (2014).
YOUNG ON THE BLUELINE
Warner Young was a rookie this season in the NOJHL, but he was still the top scoring defenceman on the Thunderbirds.
The rookie defenceman led all Thunderbird blueliners in scoring during the regular season with 3 goals and 28 assists in 53 games.
Young’s 28 assists this season, tied the Thunderbirds record for most assists by a rookie defenceman in a regular season, joining Barnabas Birkeland (2003) and Steven Bellini (2018).
(Photo credit to Bob Davies)